Open Forum: Spring Cleaning Edition!

It may be that Spring is officially ten days off, but here in Alexandria, Virginia, Dogwoods are blooming, the Bradford Pears have exploded with brilliant blossoms, the cherry trees have popped, and I’m worrying about the Red Sox (who are undefeated after eleven Spring Training games, meaning that they must be really bad). Damn climate change!

I thought it was a rather turbulent week ethics-wise, and I know that, as usual, a lot was missed here. It was another one of those weeks that I found myself full of self-loathing for not figuring out how to make ethics more profitable without making it unethical—ye olde “ethical vs non-ethical considerations dilemma.

That’s enough blather from me, though: You’re on!

26 thoughts on “Open Forum: Spring Cleaning Edition!

  1. The Minnesota Wild are the latest NHL team to refuse to don rainbow jerseys for Pride, in a process that is sort of a movement in reverse, started by one Russian Philadelphia Flyer who decided he did not want to be a political billboard an advertise a view that was not his own. Many say this represents homophobic behavior, but I am hesitant to call refusing to display a view that is not your own phobia. On the contrary, I think by their failure to nip the Krappernick issue in the bud, professional sports have painted themselves into a corner here. After all, if you can’t compel someone to show basic loyalty for his country, how can you compel anyone to embrace any cause?

    Let me throw out a couple of other examples:

    It’s Memorial day, and all of the players on a particular team are going to wear poppy 🌺patches with the words “lest we forget.” One player says that, as a Quaker, he is against all war generally and does not want to wear the patch. Ok or not ok?

    It’s 9/11, and it is proposed that the players all wear flag 🇺🇲patches with half a thin blue line and half a thin red line 🟦🟥in honor of the fallen first responders. One player says he does not want to honor the police because of their conduct towards certain people. Is that okay or not okay?

    It’s October, which is Breast Cancer awareness month, and it is proposed that the players all wear pink 🌷hats rather than their normal hats for breast cancer awareness. One player says he thinks this is foolishness, and it is more important to contribute to research which might actually help women beat breast cancer. Is that okay or not okay?

    Okay, last one. It’s Juneteenth and it is proposed that the players all wear patches in the Pan-African colors of red, black and green 🟥⬛🟩 with the legend “black lives matter.” One player says that, although he agrees with the principal, he does not agree with the movement due to some of their actions, and he does not want to be a billboard for that movement. Ok or not ok?

    What do you think? Can an employer insist that his employees become walking billboards for whatever cause the employer chooses to embrace? Is any employee free to opt out of causes? Are there certain causes that are so important everyone should be compelled to participate, and, if so, what are they?

    • I’d love to know how they came up with thirty million (!!!) in damages. Wow! That’s some creative lawyering and accounting. It’s one of the big ironies of life since the appearance of effective pharmaceutical birth control that women have surrendered a very (the most?) effective weapon in the battle of the sexes: marriage.

      • Tiger is an icon to the under fifty set. A mystery. I find him absolutely reprehensible. I have a thing about guys who mistreat women in general, particularly their wives and the mothers of their children. He’s a classic case of like father, like son.

  2. Here is an article worth commenting about.

    Health officials and governors in more than half the country are now
    restricted from issuing mask mandates, ordering school closures and
    imposing other protective measures or must seek permission from their
    state legislatures before renewing emergency orders, the analysis showed.
    The movement to curtail public health powers successfully tapped into a
    populist rejection of pandemic measures following widespread anger and
    confusion over the government response to covid. Grass-roots-backed
    candidates ran for county commissions and local health boards on the
    platform of dismantling health departments’ authority. Republican
    legislators and attorneys general, religious liberty groups and the
    legal arms of libertarian think tanks filed lawsuits and wrote new laws
    modeled after legislation promoted by groups such as the American
    Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative, corporate-backed influence
    in statehouses across the country.
    The Alabama legislature barred businesses from requiring proof of
    coronavirus vaccination. In Tennessee, officials cannot close churches
    during a state of emergency. Florida made it illegal for schools to
    require coronavirus vaccinations.
    [Cut short: One million covid deaths]
    The result, public health experts warn, is a battered patchwork system
    that makes it harder for leaders to protect the country from infectious
    diseases that cross red and blue state borders.
    “One day we’re going to have a really bad global crisis and a pandemic
    far worse than covid, and we’ll look to the government to protect us,
    but it’ll have its hands behind its back and a blindfold on,” said
    Lawrence Gostin, director of Georgetown University’s O’Neill Institute
    for National and Global Health Law. “We’ll die with our rights on — we
    want liberty but we don’t want protection.”
    Those seeking to dismantle public health powers say they’re fighting
    back against an intrusion on their rights by unelected bureaucrats who
    overstepped amid a national crisis.
    “We don’t want to concentrate power in a single set of hands,” said Rick
    Esenberg, head of the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, a
    libertarian law firm that won a state Supreme Court case barring health
    officials from closing schools. “It’s a usurpation of the legislative role.”
    Many conservatives said they did not believe the public health orders
    were effective in saving lives, despite evidence to the contrary. One
    study, for example, found that coronavirus vaccines prevented 3.2
    million additional deaths in the United States.

    • Well, you know, if public health ‘experts’ had shown themselves worthy of trust, we might not have revoked their powers.

      I feel this is a natural reaction to the abuse of power by public health officials and politicians during the pandemic. They lied to us, persecuted dissent, overhyped the ‘vaccines’ efficacy and safeness, required measures that they knew or certainly should have known were not only ineffective but actually dangerous to the kids being forced to mask and forced into lockdowns.

      What the hell do they expect?

      They spent decades earning our trust and a few months tossing it in the trash. I believe they will have to spend a long time regaining it, and rightly so.

    • My tree lines are sprinkled with a mixture dogwood and redbuds. The darned Bradford pears are in full display, along with yellow Forsythia and even a few of my peach trees. I’m hoping a predicted freezing spell next week doesn’t damage the fruit trees. I will have to cut grass within a week, so the early Spring is a mixed blessing.

  3. So it was a tossup between the YWCA’s “Racial Justice Challenge” and my law school’s (Yale’s) upcoming “Diversity Homecoming” but the Homecoming won. I mean the keynote speaker is Stacey Abrams! I actually read the invitation to Asian Pacific American Law Students, Black Law Students, Dredd Scott Society, Latinex Law Students, Native American Law Students, Middle Eastern Law Students. Women of Color Law Students, etc., alums with an open mind but the schedule promises an entire weekend of grievance airing and bashing everyone and everything that is “non-diverse.” I can’t imagine the rubbish that is being pumped into the heads of the current students.

    • Yes. It gets tedious very quickly. We went to see George Lopez at a local club with our teenage daughter and he was the same way. And we are not shrinking violets! You could argue that comedy isn’t funny any more.

  4. Washington Elementary School District in Glendale Arizona for a little over a decade has partnered with Arizona Christian University’s education department. ACU provided “student teachers” to fill in various teaching and substituting roles over 11 years with apparently exemplary conduct and ability in return the school district provides opportunities for Education Majors to gain valuable real life teaching experience.

    There have been 0 complaints, only compliments of their conduct as teachers, and quite a few of the graduates moved on to full time employment with the school district.

    Recently ACU reaffirmed its commitment to historic Christian values regarding marriage and family. This affirmation which hasn’t seemed at all to even remotely be carried across to ACU’s students proselytizing WESD’s students was apparently too much for the WESD’s governing board which contains a handful of “LGBTQ+” members.

    They have cancelled the agreement between the university and the district and will not only no longer actively provide opportunities to ACU education majors, but will actively deny them those openings as student teachers.

    Certainly in the years to come, this will probably also play out in actively not hiring them when they graduate also.

  5. Walgreens and CVS are pulling abortion pills from 21 states that have banned those pills. The FDA has approved those pills for use in inducing abortions.

    Federalism at work here – should the national level of government BAN a product, it should technically be banned in all the states. HOWEVER, the converse is not true, the approval of something is *NOT* a universal compulsion of use, merely that the Federal level of government won’t stop its use. States are still free to ban as they will. Though even then, if the Federal level BANs a product, there’s no requirement that states actually enforce the law, but merely they must move out of the way if federal agencies show up to enforce the law. Again, the converse does not hold true – if Federal law chooses not to ban something or chooses not to enforce a ban – they are not empowered to step in and stop a state agency acting on state laws where a particular state may have banned a product. All of this is barring a larger constitutional need being met, of course.

    So now, Democrat governors are flipping out, as dictatorial Gavin Newsom has vowed to make it impossible for places like Walgreens to work in California. In fairness, he can afford to say abysmally stupid things like that as CVS’s and Walgreens are fleeing various California neighborhoods in droves since they are routinely sacked by looters which California police will not stop. But that’s a side issue in America’s Blue-state led plunge into becoming a Third World Banana Republic.

  6. If you thought the drive to remove any reference to the Confederacy would stop with renaming a few military bases, you may be as wrong as those who thought statue toppling would stop with Lee. Apparently, properties with only tenuous connections are also fair game.

    A congressionally chartered group assigned to reviewing federal names related to the Confederacy, says that a Georgia lake and dam (along with many other properties) are “within its remit for consideration, but not within its purview to provide a naming recommendation” and changes will be left to congress.

    In north Georgia, the large reservoir, Lake Lanier, is named after the Georgia poet Sidney Lanier…who happened to have been a private in the CSA army. The dam for the lake is the location-named Buford Dam, after the nearby town of Buford…which is named after CSA officer Algernon Buford.

    Who wants to bet the usual suspects won’t start pushing for lake Floyd, Biden Dam, …?

    • Was just pointed to a Lanier poem by my good friend, college roommate and best man who is wintering in the SC/GA tidewater area. Lanier died at 39 of TB he contracted in a Union POW camp as a twenty-year-old. An impressive guy and accomplished poet, critic and academic. A professor at Johns Hopkins when he died. Very florid poetry but effective. Lake Lanier will likely be renamed Lake Abrams.

  7. Biden’s budget was unveiled this week and he is touting reducing the deficit and increasing spending on all sorts of programs. Obviously he cannot do both unless he raises taxes. Once again we hear that the 1% don’t pay their fair share. The fact is that despite earning 22% of national income they pay 42% of all federal taxes. Instead of demanding presidents disclose their tax returns we simply require them to disclose actual aggregate data when they start talking about fair share.
    He states that no one earning under 400k will see their taxes rise. Again this may be factually correct but is deceptive in reality. Currently, the FED is planning more rate hikes on top of the 400 basis points it has added to the Federal funds rate since last year. Ostensibly, these rate hikes are designed to slow aggregate demand which is comprised of consumer spending, private investment, government spending and net exports.
    Here is the problem. Consumers are facing increasing interest rates on home mortgages and credit cards. Every 1% increase in an adjustable rate mortgage or home equity line will result in a $1,000.00 increase in cost for each $100k in mortgage balance. This means that anyone with a $100,000 loan balance will incur an indirect tax of $4,000 this year alone and we can expect that to rise. This directly affects consumer standard of living by limiting choices and opportunities. You might think that it should also serve as a deterrent to profligate spending by Government but because the Fed monetizes the debt by giving cash for new issue bonds most of the interest paid by the government is returned to the treasury.
    My question is why we cannot force the government to stop spending when the Fed is hiking the interest rates that affect all consumers.

    • Some former high school teachers in the family (Latin, English) have told me that even black students mock some others as having “ghetto names”.

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